Is less more?
Recently, Josh Spector posted on social media (I think it was in his Newsletter Creators Facebook Group but I can’t seem to track it down) that he thinks we might all be making our newsletters too complicated.
His theory, which you can learn more about by watching our interview, stems from launching a short, daily version of his newsletter For the Interested and getting more engagement with the to-the-point, single-idea content he sends in it than his weekend digest version.
So he tested that theory in his longer newsletter and shortened that commentary, too, and my suspicion is he’s onto something.
Before you cringe, I want you to think about why considering “going short” may cause a bit of anxiety (mainly because I’m in the middle of this roller coaster of emotions myself and want to be transparent): IT’S BECAUSE WE ARE VERY EMOTIONALLY TIED TO ANYTHING WE CREATE.
No amount of “it’s just business” makes it feel better when an editor tells you to turn 5 paragraphs into one.
The phrase “It’s good, but I just don’t have time to read it,” burns.
So we tell ourselves we’re really writing for the people who read every word.
And then we make it easy to skim because we know some people might be skimming.
But, think about your own email reading habits.
How often do you slow down and read every word?
I have a few writers I bestow that honor to.
The rest I definitely skim.
So, this week, horror of horrors, I’ve decided to run my own test and minimize my commentary (but to keep my Prologue longish, because I’m still precious about it, ok?).
And I’d really love to know what you think.
If you make it to the end (please make it to the end), click yes or no to let me know if I should continue with this format or return to longer commentary.
Now, let’s dive into (or skim the surface of, actually) some relevant newsletter news and advice.
Marketing Advice From LinkedIn (2 Posts)
Erin Balsa shared her process for optimizing existing content.
Camille Trent shared 6 growth marketing podcasts worth listening/subscribing to.
Forward-Thinking Publishing Insights To Keep You On Track
From social media engagement and publishing tools to the holidays and beyond, this week’s publishing insights run the gamut.
- Do publishers need dynamic paywalls? Jessica Vomiero with The Fix takes a look.
- No shock here, but the holidays are coming! However, Max Willens with Digiday has found that nearly 60% of publishers don’t offer holiday discounts on subscriptions. Note: it’s a Member's Only article.
- Wish Facebook would pay you for news content? AP Publisher reports they will for French publishers.
- Sarah Scire with Nieman Lab explores how Axios has launched a paid membership program for some of its local newsletters.
- Want to succeed in the next decade? Check out these 5 ideas from The Fix for What’s New in Publishing.
- In another WNIP article, a contributor breaks down 10 ways publishers can create engagement on social media.
Reordering Newsletter Content Within Categories
If you’ve been subscribed for a while now, you might have read about my curation workflow and how I compare the quality of my best collected links and sort them to determine what stays and what gets cut.
I bring the articles, videos, podcasts, LinkedIn posts, etc. into my draft issue then start working my way through each category, reordering them from strongest to “least strong.” This week, Money Matters had some great contenders and, because I decided to do less commentary, I kept 4 links.
Seth created a GIF to show how easy that reordering process is.
Note: You can also quickly recategorize a collected item by dragging it into another category.
Like this newsletter? Or maybe not?
Time to let me know if the shorter commentary works or falls short of your expectations.
I’ve hidden the same extra resource behind each of the following links, so no need to click both.
🗳️ Please vote 🗳️
Yes, I like the shorter commentary.
No, please bring back all the lists and bullet points.
Thanks for reading and letting me know what you think.
Please hit reply if you want to tell me why you voted yes or no.